Development of Cost-Effective VARTM Technology for Repair and Hardening – Design Method and Specifications for ALDOT Contractor: Phase 1

High quality and expedient processing repair methods are necessary to enhance the service life of bridge structures. Deterioration of concrete can occur as a result of structural cracks, corrosion of reinforcement, and freeze-thaw cycles. Most infrastructure-related applications of fiber-reinforced plastics use traditional hand layup technology. This process is tedious, expensive, labor-intensive, and sensitive to personnel skill level. An alternative to hand lay-up is Vacuum Assisted Resin Transfer Molding (VARTM). This newly introduced technique for civil infrastructure, VARTM, uses single sided molding technology to infuse resin over fabrics while wrapping large structures such as bridge girder spans, wall panels, and columns. There is limited understanding of the problems and the benefits developed when VARTM processing is adapted to wrap fibers such as carbon and/or glass over concrete structures. For example a weak laminate-concrete interface could create problems such as water seepage, fiber wrinkling, premature failure caused by debonding at the interface, and moisture-induced delamination. This project, initial phase of a long term project to develop VARTM design method and specification, was conducted to improve understanding of the composite-concrete interface, the feasibility of VARTM over a large reinforced concrete structure, and the issues encountered in the practical implementation of VARTM. The laboratory studies performed during this project made possible the implementation of this technology in a full size T-bulb girder of I-565 in Huntsville, Alabama, which is the first of its kind (to the researcher’s knowledge) to have been retrofitted using VARTM. Unidirectional carbon fiber Sikawrap HEX 103C and low viscosity epoxy resin Sikadur 300 were used in the processing of the concrete specimens.

  • Corporate Authors:

    University of Alabama, Birmingham

    Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering
    1075 13th Street South
    Birmingham, AL  United States  35294

    University of Alabama, Birmingham

    Department of Materials Science and Engineering
    Birmingham, AL  United States  35294

    Alabama Department of Transportation

    1409 Coliseum Boulevard
    Montgomery, AL  United States  36130-3050
  • Authors:
    • Uddin, Nasim
    • Shohel, Muhammad
    • Vaidya, Uday
    • Serrano-Perez, J C
  • Publication Date: 2006-6


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: CD-ROM
  • Edition: Final Report
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 142p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01046451
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Contract Numbers: ALDOT Research Project 930-607
  • Created Date: Apr 16 2007 6:36PM